Deciding if a Lost Filling or Crown is a Dental Emergency and How to Treat It
Have you ever had a filling or crown fall out and wondered if it constitutes a dental emergency? Pflugerville TX residents should know the importance of understanding the impact of losing a filling or crown, and how to decide between immediate care or a scheduled visit.
Recognizing Dental Emergencies
The Impact of a Lost Filling or Crown
- Heightened sensitivity: Raw nerves may cause pain when consuming hot, cold, or sweet foods.
- Continued decay: If the issue isn’t dealt with quickly, it may lead to more severe tooth decay.
- Bacterial infection: An open cavity gives bacteria an entry point, potentially causing infection.
- Injury: The unprotected tooth can easily crack or break when put under pressure.
- Aesthetic concerns: A missing crown can affect your smile and self-confidence.
Deciding Between Emergency Care and Scheduled Dentist Visits
Seek emergency dental care
Pain suggests nerve exposure
Wait for a dental appointment
Discomfort is usually manageable without immediate attention
Inability to eat/drink
Need an emergency visit
Eating and drinking are essential activities
How Emergency Dentists Handle Lost Fillings and Crowns
At-Home Care for a Lost Filling or Crown
If you’ve lost a dental crown or filling, you’ll need to take steps to prevent further damage and infection. Inspect the affected area using a mirror, then rinse it gently with warm salt water. Avoid harsh brushing. Purchase over-the-counter temporary dental cement from a local pharmacy and follow instructions closely. Clove oil can help relieve pain until you see a dentist; dab it lightly on sensitive areas. Take over-the-counter pain relievers to manage discomfort until you receive professional treatment.
- Regular Dental Check-ups: Make sure to visit your dental professional at least twice a year for check-ups and cleanings.
- Brush and Floss Daily: Consistent brushing (twice daily) and flossing (once daily) can keep your teeth healthy and protect against decay that may weaken fillings or crowns.
- Healthy Diet: Limit sugary foods and drinks that contribute to tooth decay.
- Prompt Dental Treatment: If you notice any discomfort or changes in your mouth, seek treatment promptly before minor issues become significant problems.